Sometimes you don’t know what you want until you see it. That was the thought behind the creation of our Basic Digital Marketing Project Plan a few years ago. We set out to provide a logical starting point for small business owners who didn’t know what to do with digital marketing but knew they needed to do something.
Since we first started working in digital marketing in 1995, we have identified a few pillars of digital marketing activity that every company needs. These pillars are the basis for a basic digital marketing plan that we use with our new clients who subscribe to our “Better Than Nothing” Digital Marketing Program.
Digital Marketing Pillars
After working with countless clients across several industries, these are the common components we find that every company needs as part of their digital marketing program.
Recurring Content Marketing
You often hear the phrase “Content is King” in digital marketing circles. To be more specific, “Recurring Content is King.” Search engines love fresh content. People are more likely to connect with brands that provide a continuous stream of engaging content.
The most efficient way to continue to publish content regularly is through a blog. Articles can easily be consumed by visitors, indexed by search engines, published on social media, enhanced with other content (images/video), and used to promote lead magnets that help convert visitors into leads.
At Touchline Marketing, we use a strategic and systematic approach to generate new content for our clients. The process involves:
- keyword research to determine which topics are most likely to gain search engine visibility
- a content development guide and project plan to drive efficient & repeatable content generation
- a team of professional writers that can churn out compelling written content.
Lead Magnet / Cornerstone Content
A lead magnet is the (free) offer you make to get information from a visitor. A lead magnet’s goal is to capture some information and start nurturing a digital relationship. A lead magnet can most often take the form of an ebook, whitepaper, checklist, how-to guide, or cheat sheet.
A Lead Collection Mechanism (Landing Page)
A landing page is different than a typical website page. The sole purpose of a landing page is to get the visitor to take a specific action. It serves as the mechanism for collecting information from the lead so a company can nurture them through other channels. Landing pages are an essential component for PPC campaigns to maximize conversion rates and lower the cost per lead and cost per acquisition.
A Website That Can Be Found Organically (via search engines)
Just filling a website with articles and content isn’t enough. There are significant technical considerations that need to be made to ensure somebody can find the asset online. Search engine optimization is an integral part of publishing digital marketing content. Other configurations such as registering a sitemap with search engines and monitoring domain status are often overlooked aspects of a digital marketing program.
Email Outreach (Newsletter)
Email is the basic unit for collectively analyzing and connecting disparate marketing channels as one. It’s the easiest way to retarget leads and find potential customers.
Basic Social Media
The most successful businesses using social media share credible content and make connections with their audience. Sharing content that highlights their experience and expertise is essential. Humanizing the company with stories and photos is also an important part of social media success.
Digital Marketing Foundation
A house without a proper foundation will crumble. The same is true for small business marketing. A proper foundation needs to be put in place to have all of the components listed above working in tandem. Not having these foundational elements in place from the beginning can prove costly. To ensure you will get the most out of a digital marketing investment, putting the following foundational elements in place is crucial:
Website – A well-built website should be a company’s on-demand digital salesperson. It should serve as a centralized hub for all company content.
Inside Sales – Especially in service-based businesses, there needs to be a hand-off from the digital world to a real human that can bring an ideal customer to the finish line. Having a trained representative who can handle leads generated from digital properties can be very important to overall success.
CRM – Customer Relationship Management systems allow for activity tracking, which documents emails, calls, and meetings. CRM systems are especially valuable for companies with long, complicated, high-value sales cycles. A CRM system can help with forecasting and track campaign-to-cash analytics.
Email Marketing System: An email marketing system allows a company to continue the lead nurturing process via email. Such systems can facilitate automated drip campaigns triggered by an event or distribute one-off messages such as quarterly newsletters.
Social Media Accounts – Social media accounts are an essential foundational component of any company’s marketing strategy. Publishing to these social platforms consistently allows people to become familiar with a company and stay connected over a more extended period.
Analytics / Tracking – Ensuring a tracking mechanism is set up and installed on your web properties is the critical first step in getting the data you need to conduct analysis later on. Configuring a tool like Google Analytics is necessary to build a basic foundation for digital marketing.
“Better Than Nothing” Digital Marketing Program
At Touchline Marketing, we decided to help busy small business owners and marketing directors by leveraging over a decade of experience running marketing departments for small and medium-sized companies. We created a basic digital marketing program that could be quickly implemented without the typical costs associated with staffing and training an internal marketing department. Our program is coordinated by one of our in-house marketing strategists and consists of all the digital marketing pillars described above.
- Recurring Content Marketing
- A Website That Can Be Found Organically (via search engines)
- Lead Magnet / Cornerstone Content
- A Lead Collection Mechanism (Landing Page)
- Email Outreach (Newsletter)
- Basic Social Media
For less than the cost of a part-time junior-level resource, a small business can build a professional digital marketing presence with our program. Suppose you know someone who runs a business and needs to move in the right direction with digital marketing. Have them check out our “Better Than Nothing” Digital Marketing Program and schedule a free consultation with a member of our team.